Background: This study aims to confirm whether an increase in the number of elderly people and a worsening in the auto-evaluation of the general health state and in the limitation of daily activities result in increases in the offered services (beds in residential LTC facilities), in the social and healthcare expenditure and, consequently, in the percentage of LTC users. Methods: This study used a pooled, cross-sectional, time series design focusing on 28 European countries from 2004 to 2015. The indicators considered are: population aged 65 years and older; self-perceived health (bad and very bad) and long-standing limitations in usual activities; social protection benefits (cash and kind); LTC beds in institutions; LTC recipients at home and in institutions; healthcare expenditures and were obtained from the Organization for Economic Co-operation and Development and Eurostat. Results: The proportion of elderly people increased, and conversely, the percentage of subjects who had a self-perceived bad or very bad health decreased. Moreover, there was an orientation to reduce the share of elderly people who received LTC services and to focus on the most serious cases. Finally, the combination of formal care at home and in institutions resulted in most Member States shifting from institutional care to home care services. Conclusions: Demographic, societal, health changes could considerably affect LTC needs and services, resulting in higher LTC related costs. Thus, knowledge of LTC expenditures and the demand for services could be useful for healthcare decision makers.
- bedsdemographyhealth expenditureshome care serviceslong-term careelderlymoneyorganisation for economic co-operation and development